At its peak, the Maya civilization consisted of two million people populating over forty cities. While Europe languished in darkness after the fall of Rome, the Maya were advancing irrigation and terracing techniques in agriculture, pioneering the use of the zero in mathematics, and creating accurate astronomical tables. Yet, much about this great culture is unknown, as scholars struggle to decipher Mayan texts. This compelling volume examines the Maya civilization in accessible chapters with supplemental maps, timelines, and charts to support student research. Relevant topics discussed in this edition include the rise of the Mayans, the lives of the nobility and commoners during the classical period, achievements in science, engineering, and writing, the spirit realm and cosmology, and elements of Mayan culture in modernity.